Robert F. Rivers
President and CEO, Eastern Bank
A few years ago, Rivers took a hard look at the bank’s governing group and became concerned: it was almost entirely made up of older white men. “I have nothing against older white men ... but we had some really glaring gaps,” says Rivers, 48.
To break the cycle at Eastern, Rivers made a conscious effort to frequent minority events and recruit professionals of color, such as Colette Phillips, a black Boston public relations executive known for multicultural marketing. Rivers says he cold-called Phillips after reading about her and later persuaded her to join the bank’s trustees. He said the number of minorities and women on the governance committees tripled to 30 percent over the past few years, though he hopes to increase it further as existing members retire.
—Todd Wallack, Globe Staff